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Getting Europe back on Track? Learning Experiences during Interrail and how a free Interrail Ticket could foster Global Citizenship
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Earth Sciences, Department of Earth Sciences.
2017 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This study investigates learning experiences and outcomes during the train travel phenomenon Interrail. It especially focuses on transformational learning and whether and in what scope these learning outcomes correlate with the concept of global citizenship. It further analyses how the proposal of a free Interrail ticket, that is currently debated within the European Commission, could foster global citizenship in the wider context of Education for Sustainable Development. Although there has been much research on educative benefits of travel, Interrail in general and as an informal learning environment in particular, is an under-researched phenomenon. By providing a deeper understanding about transformative learning processes and outcomes during the specific case of Interrail in the context of sustainable development, this study contributes towards closing this niche. This research was carried out in form of a qualitative case study research. In total, 18 in-depth interviews were conducted with young adults representing 13 different nationalities. The interviews were thoroughly analysed by applying Jack Mezirows´ transformative learning theory and the concept of global citizenship. The results were completed with an additional documentation analysis. The study results reveal that Interrail with its specific characteristics and elements may provide an informal learning environment that can foster and promote both transformative learning and global citizenship to the individual traveller. The identified patterns and commonalities of learning experiences and outcomes were summarized within the main topics of personal development, critical thinking and reflection, cultural sensitivity and pluralism, shaping identity and sense of belonging, broadening view and change of behavior or action. Implementing a free Interrail ticket could thus arguably contribute to greater accessibility and more equal opportunities for youth to discover, experience and learn from travelling through Europe by train. Subsequently, this could help to foster Education for Sustainable Development and global citizenship. Based on the study results it is suggested, that transformative learning during Interrail could be enhanced through providing incentives and formal guidance in critical thinking and engagement in rational discourse in formal education.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. , 40 p.
Series
Examensarbete vid Institutionen för geovetenskaper, ISSN 1650-6553 ; 2017/7
Keyword [en]
Sustainable Development, Education for Sustainable Development, Transformative Learning, Global Citizenship, Interrail
National Category
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-324047OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-324047DiVA: diva2:1108379
Educational program
Master Programme in Sustainable Development
Presentation
2017-05-31, Geocentrum, Villavägen 16, Uppsala, 11:50 (English)
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2017-06-13 Created: 2017-06-12 Last updated: 2017-06-13Bibliographically approved

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fulltext(3708 kB)49 downloads
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Schmiers, Tina
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Citation style
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